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Stroke Smart Magazine

May/June 2009

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Coffee Might Reduce Stroke Risk in Women
A new study published by the American Heart Association shows coffee might reduce the risk of stroke in women. The 24-year study analyzed 83,000 women who had no history of stroke. Women who drank four cups of coffee a day had a 20 percent reduced risk of stroke compared to those who had less than a cup a month.

The study also found that the benefits of coffee were greater for nonsmokers. The women who drank four cups a day and were not smokers saw a 43 percent reduction in stroke risk. But drinking too much coffee can also have adverse effects, notes said Dr. Karla Lee, a cardiologist at Baylor Grapevine.

“It increases the risk of insomnia, which is prevalent, (and) increases your risk of palpitations," she said. Lee recommends drinking two to three cups of joe coffee, not other caffeinated drinks a day.
Read more at: http://health.usnews.com/articles/health/healthday/2009/02/16/coffee-drinking-lowers-womens-stroke-risk.html

Stroke Recovery Center Launches at UC Drake Center
University of Cincinnati (UC) has launched a Stroke Recovery Center at Drake Center that builds on Drake's strengths in the area of neuro-rehabilitation, combined with UC’s leadership in stroke research and treatment. The Stroke Recovery Center includes post-stroke recovery care, including inpatient and outpatient treatment, research and consultation. Patients can access one or multiple levels of service based on their medical condition.

The new Stroke Team Assessment and Recovery Treatment (START) Program is for patients who are months or years post-stroke, but passionate about seeking a fuller recovery.
Following an assessment, the stroke recovery team develops an individualized, evidence-based treatment plan for the patient; then continues to monitor the patient's progress, making changes to the plan based on the outcomes and needs. A unique facet of the plan is the use of therapies that are supported by evidence, and the opportunity for patients to participate in free stroke recovery clinical trials.

To learn more about the Stroke Recovery Center at Drake, call 513-418-2470.
Read more at: http://healthnews.uc.edu/news/?/7843/

Hand Exercise Robotic Device Helps Motor Skills
U.S. researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital have developed a robotic device that appears to help stroke victims recover motor skills even more than six months after a stroke.

Brain scans suggested that the device, which stroke survivors squeeze with their stroke-affected hands, boosts activity in the part of the brain that handles use of the hands. The stroke patients in the new study squeezed the device, which can be set to provide different levels of resistance.

The researchers tested the device on five patients who had lost motor control in their right hands after strokes. Brain scans using MRI technology found that the device seemed to boost activity in the cortex, the region of the brain that corresponds with hand use, even after patients stopped using the tool.
Read more at: http://www.rsna.org/media/pressreleases/pr_target.cfm?ID=394

Stem Cell Therapy works in First Patient Tested
For The first stroke patient treated with Biocompatibles International Plc's experimental stem cell therapy has shown no side effects following surgery, the company said. The 49-year-old man is the first of 20 people to be treated in the Phase I/II Trial aimed at showing the therapy is safe for men and women who have had severe strokes, Biocompatibles Chief Executive Crispin Simon said.

Researchers noted that, while the man regained an ability to speak and his paralysis disappeared following treatment, it was not clear whether this was due to the experimental treatment involving adult stem cells. In addition to the new treatment, the man also had surgery to reduce pressure on his brain.

Studies have shown that transplanting brain cells produced from human embryonic stem cells have helped fix damage in the brains of rats. In this case, researchers used adult stem cells obtained from a healthy donor, which the team programmed to deliver a naturally occurring protein called GLP-1 that protects against the cell death in the brain following stroke.
Read more at: http://uk.reuters.com/article/idUKL260321920081202


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National Stroke Association’s mission is to reduce the incidence and impact of stroke by developing compelling education and programs focused on prevention, treatment, rehabilitation and support for all impacted by stroke.

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